February 10, 2013, Parksville, BC (ISN) – Sam Rice scored the game winner late in the second period to help propel the Victoria Cougars to a 2-1 win over the Oceanside Generals Saturday night.
Also scoring for Victoria (44-1-0-2) was Wade Johnson who notched his sixth goal in three games.
Michael Herringer, who received his second consecutive start in net, stopped 16 shots for the victory.
With the score tied, Rice deflected a Rhys Williams point shot past Alex Mastrodonato at 17:27 for his 20th goal and 93rd point of the season.
Mastrodonato, who recently assumed the starter’s role after Kiefer Giroux left for Texas to play for the El Paso Rhinos of the Western States Hockey League, made 29 saves which included stopping 15-of-15 third period shots.
The Generals pulled Mastrodonato for an extra attacker with half a minute left in regulation but were unable to generate a shot on goal.
Travis Flug opened the scoring on a bizarre play.
Eight seconds after the opening face-off, Cole Schneider won the draw back to defenseman James Sneddon who proceeded to skate up ice. After having his slap shot take a V-shaped bounce off the end boards, Flug gobbled up the rebound and fired it home to give Oceanside the early lead.
It was a slow go for the Cougars as it took 11 minutes into the game for them to register their second shot on goal.
Oceanside (20-23-0-2) was not much better. They were limited to seven shots on goal through 40 minutes and did not reach double digits until the 5:51 mark of the third period.
The score remained 1-0 in favour of the Generals until the 6:39 mark of the second period.
Johnson, who scored four goals in his last game, beat Mastrodonato on a breakaway.
Quinlan Moore, one of the two defenders chasing Johnson, slammed his stick against the glass after the goal.
Oceanside had a glorious chance late in the game go for not when Chandler Bruyckere missed on a wide open net with 90 seconds remaining.
Special teams were a non-factor. Victoria went 0-for-2 on the power play; meanwhile, the Generals went 0-for-4.
Saturday marked the final road game of the regular season for the Cougars who finished with 22 wins and two shootout losses.
In Mill Bay, Jackson Jane stopped all 32 shots to lift the hometown Kerry Park Islanders to a 4-0 blanking of the Nanaimo Buccaneers.
And in Courtenay, Rylan Ball and John Gosbee recorded three points apiece as the Comox Valley Glacier Kings beat the visiting Campbell River Storm 7-4.
Next game for Victoria is Thursday, February 14 against the Saanich Braves. Game time at the Archie Browning Sports Centre, located at 1151 Esquimalt Road, is 7:00 p.m.
1st star, Sam Rice (Goals: 1, Assists: 0)
2nd star, Alex Mastrodonato (Saves: 29, Save Percentage: .935)
3rd star, Mark Walton (Goals: 0, Assists: 0)